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  • Writer's pictureLaura Fedolfi

Morning Conversations as Adults

Updated: May 23, 2019

[warning- this blog post falls into the category that I like to call "why no one really wants to watch a tv show about what marriage is really like because it is made up of a million small jokes no one else would find funny and then some really heavy stuff." Consider yourself warned. ]

Remember when you were a child and you woke up and the problem you might face would be that your brother had stuck his arm down the side of the cereal box to steal the prize out before you had a chance for it to land in your bowl? I do.

This is what my morning was like, this morning...

I must have been dreaming about Game of Thrones, but not the finale -no spoilers- but about the episode right before the Night King's Battle of Winterfell, when all the main characters were confronting their impending mortality...I had been thinking about the choices people make to affirm their lives in the face of possible destruction.

And then waking up, the lyrics from a Dave Mathews song started on a loop in my head, and as I joined my husband for breakfast, I started to tunelessly sing, "eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow we die.." You know, what everyone wants to hear from their partner first thing in the morning.

And he reasonable responded with, "What?"

"That song, you know, by Dave Matthews?'

I hum a few more tuneless bars, but I can tell by his bewilderment that I am not making anything clearer, so I scroll through my phone to the one Dave Matthews album I have on my phone, which is the Live at Luther College, and I think it is part of the song, Dancing Nancies, so I play that as we drink our coffee and I look up what Dancing Nancies means (you can learn about it here) and in the middle of my search I realize that this is not the song I was thinking of, so I google, "What is the Dave Matthews song with eat drink and be merry?" and I get Tripping Billies, which is the right song and as I play it, and simultaneously look up what Tripping Billies means (because this is the point of Google in our lives and you can learn about Tripping Billies on your own, there are only so many times I want to invite you to leave my story...)

And then Steve mentions that he feels like Dave Matthews is one of those people who sort of disappeared so then I google Dave Matthews Tour and find out he's playing in June in Massachusetts and we've never seen him in concert but now I have spent twenty minutes of my morning talking about him and reading about him, so out of curiosity I look up how much a ticket at his concert would go for, and I laugh out loud as I tell Steve that a single ticket to Dave Matthews concert is listed for $1,022.00 and he says "of course" like "of course there are people who would spend that because this is 2019 and there are ridiculous things everywhere" and I want to join in with him, agreeing and I say

"It's for people for whom money is no option."- a woman before she'd had her first cup of coffee but has already had too much screen time...

After correcting myself amid Steve's laughter, "...for whom money is no object." He points out how perfectly opposite those two ideas are, and we become quiet, thinking about the distance between the people for whom money is no object and money is no option. We start talking about our concerns in low tones, our children still asleep upstairs. Why does anyone need to charge that much money for music? Why would anyone spend that much money on a single show? With the stark economic inequalities growing further apart, how have we slid into the dystopian fiction of The Hunger Games, with the excesses of the Capital stacked up against the desperation of District 12?

We end talking about the hopes for political change in 2020, but we share an uncomfortable feeling that our belief in the trajectory of humanity towards greater justice and kindness is unstable. We know that the inequities in our society will not be fixed simply, but I think we had always assumed that we were part of a movement towards that future. And now that feels uncertain. What kind of work will bring us back to economic justice?

[CORRECTION: I read this to Steve, and he said, "I don't remember talking about this...I mean maybe we said something about it a little, but I was really thinking about what a strange expression "money is no object" really is..."

"I thought about this. And I thought we talked about this...didn't we?"

"Oh, right. You did say something about the revolution being televised...was that when you had that dark conversation in your head?"

"I didn't think it was in my head, but it might have you think I have to fix the post?"

"Not if you don't want to, it's not like every post has to be honest..."

"Oh crap. Fine. I'll fix the post."

For the record, Steve and I did not talk about the uncertain future or concerns about economic injustice- those apparently are the thoughts I had imagined sharing when I replayed the conversation in my head. He was right. For anyone keeping track, Steve is usually right. I didn't mean to lie. I apologize. But this next part is totally true...especially about the song. It stayed in my head all day.]

We shift back to schedules and dinner plans and goodbyes, but in the back of my head, I am singing again, "Eat, drink and be merry, for tomorrow we die."

Just another morning.

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